Ease on down the road with NBC when the network airs a live production of The Wiz on Dec. 3! NBC's Robert Greenblatt announced the next live musical from Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, the team that brought you Smash, The Sound of Music and Peter Pan.
NBC is partnering with Cirque du Soleil for the project. It's then set to become a Broadway revival in the 2016-2017 season.
"We love this yearly tradition and we're more excited than ever to not only bring another Broadway musical to America's living rooms, but also see it land on Broadway as well," said Greenblatt. "It's a natural next step for our live musical events and we're so pleased to be in business with this award-winning creative team and Scott Zeiger, President and Managing Director of Cirque du Soleil's new theatrical division. Cirque's incredible imagination will help bring the fantasy world of Oz vividly to life and give this great show a modern spin on the age-old story we all love."
Kenny Leon will stage the TV version and Broadway revival. Harvey Fierstein will contribute new material to the Broadway book by William F. Brown."We are delighted that NBC and Cirque du Soleil will present The Wiz," Zeiger said in a statement. "It's a musical I have wanted to produce for years and it's the perfect show to present under the new Cirque du Soleil Theatrical banner."
Casting will be announced at a later date, so start putting those suggestions in the comments below!
The Wiz is an adaptation of L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz with music and lyrics by Charlie Smalls and a book from Brown. The show opened in 1975 and won seven Tonys. The musical tells the story of The Wizard of Oz, but with an "African-American/multicultural twist," NBC said in a release. Michael Jackson, Diana Ross and Lena Horne starred in the 1978 flick.
NBC was eying either The Wiz or The Music Man for its next holiday musical broadcast.
"We're thrilled to have the opportunity to not only produce this as our next live musical for NBC, but to then see it move to Broadway for a new generation to experience," Zadan said in a statement. "It will be a joy to work again with Kenny Leon, who did Steel Magnolias and Raisin in the Sun with us," Meron added.